Beautiful Distractions


Yesterday astonished me.

I completed two, yes TWO housey type projects that I’ve been procrastinating for a while. I’ve been putting off one of them for months. MONTHS I tell you!

Tomorrow I’ll share the first one with you but today, I just want to tell you that I owe it all to one thing. The 30 Days Without Accessories Experiment.

Who would have thought that removing accessories would somehow motivate me to finish a few little projects?

It’s because I could finally see them enough to let them bug me. Without all of my pretty things sitting out, I could see what was undone, and for whatever reason finishing up my two little projects didn’t see that daunting AND, when they were done they made a huge difference in the spaces! No one is more amazed than me!

Today? I see my next victim. See that plant on the table on the right in the picture above? Look underneath the table. There’s a cable wire that comes out of the wall. And the cover isn’t screwed on. And there is a huge gaping hole that shows behind it. I think it’s been like that for the past 3.5 years. And I’ve always had something there in front of it so I never cared to take the 97 seconds needed to fix it.

Even if I end up putting every single item back (I kind of doubt that but who knows?) it’s been so great just to see my house with a different perspective. I’m already thinking this accessory-less practice might be an annual event for me.

stump smile


Even the furniture seems happier. I don’t think I’ve ever noticed how happy it is.

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  1. I am a TOTAL minimalist-don’t like clutter or “stuff” and I have to say that I LOVE LOVE LOVE your beautiful home sans accessories. Of course, I know it’s for a season and we all have different styles and likes/dislikes, but I just wanted to say that I think it’s beautiful!

  2. Suzanne says:

    What an amazing fringe benefit of going accessory free!

  3. Just wondering…have you ever tried that long skinny table behind your couch? You would have to rearrange your gallery wall…

    • yes! I actually have tried it there multiple times, I keep thinking it will work beautifully, but once I move it there it seems purposeless other than to hold more things, and the room is already such an awkward layout, it pushes the sofa up just enough to not make sense with the sailfish wall. Good eye though!!

  4. I think I should do this every year too! Your house looks so great even without all the stuff. I guess that’s why having good basic design is good. It works without all the fluff!

  5. Everything looks great! And the smiley tree stump cracks me up. :)

  6. you’re on to something! tree stump smiling reminds me of seeing the forest through the trees! :)

  7. That’s so funny about your stump table…isn’t it funny what you see when the “noise” is removed??

  8. The room looks amazing, so quiet and serene. I’ve been contemplating repainting our simply white painted family room gray, but seeing your room in the new light changed my mind. It really makes me think, less is more…

  9. I am loving this series, girl!!!

  10. that room looks so cozy and calm without any accessories, I immediately noticed the difference. Glad you’re giving it a try… and sharing it with us! :)

  11. I’m kind of loving this. I might be inspired to do this, too. Reminds me of Paige Knudsen’s house. So calm and quiet.

  12. Love the look – I am thinking I need to clear off surfaces, but my house is so small that I’m not sure where I’d put stuff – – I’ll need to think about this – I like the idea of freeing up space so projects can surface.

  13. I love how clean and uncluttered your space looks! I’d love that look for my home! (I have a lot of cleaning and decluttering to do!)

  14. No accessories…you are so brave! I love my tchotckes, can’t imagine how bare my house would look without them. Too funny how your wooden table has a “happy face”. :-)

  15. :) love the smiley face on your tree stump table!! Your house still looks amazing even without the accessories!

  16. The room looks great and I to have done the no accessories trick before. Thats just to decide what to put back and what to get rid of

  17. Ruth in NZ says:

    Love to see the process of what you are doing and hear your reflections on it. Just a question as far as realities. We have a standing joke in our family about “horizontal surfaces” and their clutter attraction. I have found if I put one tray or a few little things in a vignette it is much less likely to attract books, papers, mail, toys etc, than if it is clear. Have you found that the “random stuff” of life has taken over where the ornaments etc have left? How much did you really have to clear away before taking the above photo? I guess I just wonder how much the “useless” actually serves a useful purpose? (And since I am an armchair spectator I am asking you to do my research for me LOL :-) )

  18. I find this funny (in a good way). I found the same thing happened to me. I finished projects, when I had fewer visual distraction… Hmmm.. Interesting.

  19. I think its a great idea…the tree stump is cute :-). It’s true how many projects can be left almost done…and hidden with an accessory. Motivating!

  20. Good Job Nester! i loved your wall accessories. Wish you good luck for future.

  21. I don’t think I have ever really noticed how colourful my home really is.

  22. Judy H. says:

    Love that smilin’ stump! After you pointed out the “cable hole”, I started looking around here at all of the little “it will be there when I get to it” projects and I began to itch. I really wasn’t planning anything like like that today. Oh well, the area on the tub caulking the plumber had chipped and stained was cleaned out and re-caulked and the huge scrape out of the paint on the baseboard in the hallway was sanded and re-painted looking like it did before it was scraped over 3 years ago.

    • yes, once I had my pretty distractions out of the way, all the stuff I’ve been putting off became glaringly obvious! It was actually good motivation for me to get a few things done!

  23. How come you left all the picture up on the wall? Not accessories?

    • yep, I really want it to be about the pretty stuff on our surfaces so I left the wall stuff–but that could be an entirely different experiment!

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